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04th October 2019 Zoe Smith

Best of British film locations

The UK and Ireland are home to amazing landscapes and scenery that have featured endlessly on the silver screen, here are our best of British film locations. 

James Bond

London, Fort William and Lochaber

With over 50 years’ worth of James Bond films and 26 titles, various buildings throughout London have made an appearance on the silver screen several times as themselves. The real MI6 Headquarters are pictured in old and new Bond films alike. Other notable locations around London include the National Gallery, Charing Cross Underground Station, Embankment Place and Whitehall Road, Westminster. The latest film, Skyfall, was also filmed partly in the Scottish Highlands, with Bond’s family home located in Glencoe.

London

The impressive buildings of London can be seen many times throughout Bond films old and new

Everything you need to know about London and Fort William and Lochaber


The Full Monty

Sheffield

This classic British comedy, released in 1997, was set amongst the industrial city of Sheffield. The story follows six unemployed men, the majority of which are former steel workers, who decide to form a male striptease act. Humble locations within Sheffield can be seen within the film, from the Sheffield Boxing Centre to the Shiregreen Working Men’s Club, serving as the fictional ‘Millthorpe Working Men’s Club’, where the group perform their famous routine to Donna Summers’ Hot Stuff. Fun Fact: some US cinemas gave audiences a printed slang guide to help them understand the film’s distinctly Northern dialogue.

Sheffield

Sheffield is the main filming location for the Full Monty

Everything you need to know about South Yorkshire


Four Weddings and a Funeral

Bedfordshire

This 1994 British romantic comedy follows Hugh Grant’s character, Charles, and his group of friends as they attend standard social occasions where they each encounter romance. The locations used for the film were all based in London and the surrounding Home Counties, Hertfordshire, Essex, Bedfordshire, Surrey, Buckinghamshire and Hampshire. The ‘second wedding’, at the fictional ‘Holbein Place’ was filmed at various locations in the Luton Hoo Hotel, including the memorable scene in which Hugh Grant hides in a cupboard.

Luton Hoo Hotel British film locations

The grounds, Drawing Room and Pillared Hall of the stunning Luton Hoo Hotel were used in Four Weddings and Funeral

Everything you need to know about Bedfordshire


Harry Potter

Durham, Fortwilliam and Lochaber

With every film in the Harry Potter series apart from ‘Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban’ ranking among the 50 highest-grossing films of all time, it is hardly surprising that various locations across the UK have seen increased rates of tourism in locations where the films have been shot. Various parts of the films have been filmed in London. Hogwarts is made up of shots from Durham Cathedral, Alnwick Castle, Gloucester Cathedral and Lacock Abbey in Wiltshire. The mighty Glenfinnan Viaduct and Jacobite Steam Train make the track and train that fans will know as the Hogwarts express.

Glenfinnan Viaduct

The Glenfinnan Viaduct and the Jacobite Steam Train, aka the Hogwarts Express

Everything you need to know about Durham, Fort William and Lochaber and Northumberland


Bridget Jones

London

Based on the fictional character as written in the books by Helen Fielding, Bridget Jones’s Diary was an instant British hit at the box office. The filming took place predominantly in London and the Home Counties, following Bridget from her Borough based residence to her job and the surrounding area. Bridget’s flat is above The Globe, Bedale Street and other locations to be spotted within the scenes of this romcom include Momo, the Royal Courts of Justice and Stoke Park House, where Bridget and Daniel Cleaver take a mini-break.

Royal Courts of Justice, London British film locations

The Royal Courts of Justice, where Bridget botches her assignment covering the extradition for Sit Up Britain

Everything you need to know about London


Trainspotting

Glasgow

The 1996 British black comedy crime film Trainspotting is set on the streets of Edinburgh, Glasgow and there are some scenes shot in London.  You can visit Café D’Jaconelli, Glasgow, where Spud and Renton share a milkshake, Princes Street in Edinburgh where Renton and Spud are running away from security guards during a shoplifting spree and Firhill Sports Complex, Glasgow where the lads’ football match takes place during Renton’s ‘Choose Life’ speech.

Glasgow

The streets of Glasgow are instantly recognisable throughout Trainspotting

Everything you need to know about Glasgow


Billy Elliot

County Durham, Middlesborough

British dance drama film, Billy Elliot, was another unlikely instant hit. With northern accents and disgruntled coal miners aplenty  during Margaret Thatcher’s England, the film follows 11-year-old Billy Elliot, the son of a miner and an unlikely but gifted ballet dancer. Locations for the film can be found in the North East of England: Easington Colliery, County Durham, was the fictional town of ‘Everington’ and the Tees Transporter Bridge also features in the film.

Transporter Bridge, Middlesborough British film locations

The Transporter Bridge has made several appearances on the silver screen over the years

Everything you need to know about Durham Tees Valley


Braveheart

Loch Leven, Dundee, Angus, Perthshire

Whilst Mel Gibson’s portrayal of William Wallace in Braveheart might not be historically accurate, there’s no denying it’s a great film and it certainly highlights some of the fabulous countryside and scenery on offer in the UK and Ireland. Filming locations include Glen Nevis, Glen Coe and Loch Leven. The set for fictional village of Lanark where William Wallace lives and grows up was created in the Glen Nevis Valley, at the foot of Ben Nevis. A lot of the film was also shot in Ireland, within a 30 mile radius of of Dublin. 

Glen Nevis

The beautiful Glen Nevis played the part of the fictional village of ‘Lanark’

Everything you need to know about Dundee, Angus and Perthshire and Fort William and Lochaber


Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves

East Sussex

The 1991 depiction of the classic tale of Robin Hood is undeniably cheesy but equally undeniably great. Starring Kevin Costner as the eponymous hero and featuring a great performance by the late Alan Rickman as the Sheriff of Nottingham, the film really is a 90s classic. The film showcases a lot of the UK, with locations including: Hadrians Wall in Northumberland, the Seven Sisters in East Sussex, Old Wardour Castle in Wiltshire, Aysgarth Falls in North Yorkshire and Burnam Beeches in Buckinghamshire (Sherwood Forest).

Seven Sisters British film locations

Robin Hood can be seen arriving home after the Crusades on a beach overlooked by the Seven Sisters

Everything you need to know about East Sussex


The Holiday

Surrey

A modern Christmas classic, The Holiday, starring Kate Winslet, Cameron Diaz, Jude Law and Jack Black, gets you feeling instantly festive with the winding lanes and snow-covered cobbles of Shere, Surrey. The film is shot equally in California, but it’s the British locations that give the movie its cosy Christmas vibes.  The village of Shere is roughly an hour and a half from London and poses as the location of Iris’s Cotswold cottage.  Other quintessentially British locations in the film include the village of Godalming which is also in Surrey, where Cameron Diaz does her Christmas shop and Cornwell Manor, Oxfordshire, where Amanda and Graham go on a date.

Shere, Surrey British film locations

The picturesque streets of Shere are recognisable throughout The Holiday

Everything you need to know about Surrey

Image credits: David Woods/IRStone/Piranhi/Swen Stroop/Adobe Stock; Luton Hoo; Mahosadha Ong/Unsplash; VisitScotland/Paul Tomkins

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